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- Club Music by Powell
9/10 Ant Staff review, 13 May 2014
Powell makes a most welcome return to his Diagonal label with the functionally titled ‘Club Music’ 12” aimed straight at the sweaty ravers. It get’s going with ‘We Went Electric’ with the fizzling sound of pure high voltage buzzing over some proper clippety chunky drums gradually introducing little fragments of samples with funky flair, in his signature style; one he’s developed and refined to the point that you couldn’t mistake this track for any other artist.
‘No U Turn’ (titled perhaps as tribute to the classic tech-step label?) mixes “real” sounding as opposed to synthetic sounding drums to fragments/ snatches of dialogue/ vocal samples and an almost EBM compatible bassline plus a bonus big shuddering bass wobble here and there. It’s all extremely well placed in terms of working a dancefloor into a frenzy, complete with a teaser of a noisy stop/start, breakdown/ buildup and kick back in. All in all a fresh take on techno using, elements from the past and making them sound remarkably contemporary. Despite working with a few loops this is way more than your average 5 loops running for the duration techno track with a bit of kick drum hide and seek. Things creep in, in unexpected ways keeping things fresh and interesting and if you’re on the dancefloor keeps things exciting.
‘Maniac’ features some Devilfish TB-303 tweaking action from none other than maniac himself Russell Haswell. For those non tech-geeks - the Devil Fish is basically a circuit bent/ modified Roland TB-303 -you know the box that makes the acid. This is probably the least obvious “Club Music” track for the safer DJ out there but I would definitely spin this and watch the freaks get freaky. There’s a totally infectious groove in there over which spewing bubbling acid squiggles, alongside what sounds like a Chuck D sample but I’m probably wrong about that. Imagine if DNA, Mars and the No Wave lot had access to todays equipment they might have produced something that sounds like this; on the surface dissonant perhaps, but when you get your head in there, it’s undeniably funky despite the fact it’s also pretty fucked sounding. He’s a reliable chap this man, he keeps coming up with the goods!
10/10 Dan John Customer review, 9th May 2014
After producing my favourite releases of 2013 with his ‘Untitled’ EP on Death of Rave and the ‘Fizz’ 12” Powell drops another 12” of immense quality. It’s a bit more techno than those releases, slightly less odd as a result, but it kicks like a mule and still has enough weird ticks, guitar samples and vocal snippets to make it stand out from the crowd and be recognisably Powell. All three tracks were previously debuted on his NTS show, I believe, and all three are absolutely brilliant. If Powell ever collects all his 12” releases and puts it on an album it would be stunning. It’s got to happen! I’m a massive fan of this guy, his blending of techno, noise, no-wave and post-punk continues to reward. Nobody to my ears sounds like Powell, just brilliant.
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